Wiki4CAM (Wiki for Complementary and Alternative Medicine) was a tiny Wiki, owned by Manish Bhatia, dedicated to protecting alternative medicine from the scientific method. While the website made it clear that skeptics need not apply, the site was predominantly a RationalWiki outpost, enjoying low to moderate use by only a few editors. The site was supported in part by Hpathy.com, a website dedicated to promoting homeopathy, which was supposedly also at work optimizing Wiki4CAM's search engine presence. Large amounts of the content also concerned Ayurveda.
After 2011, there was very little activity on the site, and it ultimately went offline in 2015.
About the owner
Wiki4CAM was owned by Dr. Manish Bhatia, aka "Dr. B", an Indian homeopathic practitioner and the owner of Hpathy.com and various other woo-promoting websites. He was also known to panic about the fact that (gasp) skeptics of homeopathy say it doesn't work (because it doesn't). As a result, he created sites like Wiki4CAM to protect homeopathy and alternative medicine in general from skepticism and the scientific method, which might get in the way of
profits his attempts to help people.
Differences from Wikipedia
Wiki4CAM was set up to counter perceived bias in Wikipedia. In this respect it is similar to dozens of other wikis out there on the Internet. Wiki4CAM stated that Wikipedia's open policies led to its "gaining political views," and that editors have gone out of their way to "discredit and disrepute nearly all alternative medicine as unscientific." As Wikipedia must be A) neutral and B) verifiable, this is hardly surprising. Pseudoscience, by the site rules, cannot be written as if it was 100% verifiable and real. Wiki4CAM also claimed to be a "true knowledge base" for alternative medicine, whereas Wikipedia is biased due to "skeptical intervention."
Articles of note
|Urine Therapy||That's not lemonade, that's a space station! Although its "Criticism by mainstream medicine" (which was re-titled as "research" in September 2008) section is about as fair as you can get. See also urine therapy.|
|Space Therapy||The suspense is totally killing us. For some reason, a lot of Wiki4CAM seems to be like this…|
|Wand||"A wand is a thin rod used by a magician..." And here we thought it was — oh well, never mind.|
|Natural health||A good wiki article should always start with the title… and end with the title. And have the title in the middle, of course.|
|Copied almost wholesale from Wikipedia, including all of the evil criticism they complain about. By 2010 they had finally finished stripping the criticism.|
|Measles||If you want information on treating a dangerous disease like measles, but don't want the treatment to help, they've got your back.|
Amidst the Wikipedia copying and stub-fest were a few solid bastions of wacky CAM rhetoric. The Myths about homeopathy offered some great reading, including the fact that homeopathy is not just water but water that has been shaken just right.
Despite heroic attempts to the contrary, Wiki4CAM appeared to have died on arrival, being edited only about 10-430 of the total hours available in any given week (which means its potency is greatly enhanced). The only activity in May 2011 was a couple of site administrators puttering around once or twice a week. The one stop CAM shop of the future needed some serious injection of caring, for which no homeopathic remedy yet exists. Although it's not easy to tell when it happened, Wiki4CAM gave over a lot of its space to Google-ads based advertising, which may have been a last ditch effort to get the cash needed to host the site.
In 2011, account creation at Wiki4CAM was disabled.
The last substantive edit to the site was in November 2011, and the last edit was in February 2012. On 7 January 2014, an admin deleted two useless pages and turned a user who had made only one edit into a bureaucrat so he could mess everything up. In October 2015, the site became dysfunctional, and later went permanently offline.
- Wiki4CAM: A note for skeptics. Archived from the original at wiki4cam.org.
- Why do we need Wiki4CAM? Archived from the original at wiki4cam.org.
- Diluting The Profits. skeptico.blogs.com, 2 December 2007.
- Close Minded Skeptics, deancameron.com.
- Naughty skeptics! Naughty, bad skeptics! scienceblogs.com, 14 August 2008.